Posted by: portersprospectreport | September 15, 2008

Holy Smoak…Razor’s At It Again!

MLB Draft set shaping up nicely

MLB Draft set shaping up nicely

Razor Collectibles increases its prospect count to 25 with its three most recent 2008 draft signees #11 pick Justin Smoak, #57 pick Robbie Ross, and #313 overall pick Robbie Weinhardt.  Let’s take a closer look at each of them.

Justin Smoak—#11 overall Texas Rangers 1B

As if Texas needed MORE offense!

As if Texas needed MORE offense!

  • Smoak is a power-packed switch hitter in the mold of former Rangers 1st rounder Mark Teixeira.  Smoak, the former South Caroline Gamecock, annihilated SEC pitching this spring hitting .383 with 23 HR 72 RBI scored 63 runs and garnered an impeccable 57 BB/28 K’s ratio en route to a .505 OBP.  Smoak continued his hot hitting .305 while smacking 3 HR and 6 RBI at full season Low-A Clinton.  Additionally, he is an adroit defender at 1B who could contend for Gold Glove awards on an annual basis.  Smoak may well be the most powerful hitter in the ’08 draft and is on the fast track to the rapidly improving Texas Rangers.  Do not be surprised to see the Rangers shift super slugging rookie Chris Davis to 3B while issuing Hank Blalock his walking papers at the end of this season, thus prompting the accelerated development of Smoak.

 

Robbie Ross—#57 overall LHP Texas Rangers

Kasey Kiker Clone?

Kasey Kiker Clone?

  • Ross is a 5-11 175 lb. southpaw signed out of a Kentucky high school.  He features 3 MLB quality pitches including a 90-92 MPH fastball that can reach 94 at times.  He also has a good feel for his hard slider and has good fade to his changeup.  He was impressive as a prep pitcher going 5-1 with a 1.07 ERA and a 74 K/6 BB ratio in just 54 IP.  Ross signed late and did not pitch in any games for the Rangers’ affiliates this year.  He will likely report to an extended spring training before checking in with the Rangers’ NW League Spokane next summer.

 

Robbie Weinhardt—#313 overall RHP Detroit Tigers

Relief is coming to Detroit
Relief is coming to Detroit
  • Weinhardt was a powerful relief pitcher at Oklahoma State University where he went 6-0 with a 3.89 ERA in 25 games.  Weinhardt struck out 70 hitters in just 44 innings while walking 20.  The Tigers moved him to Lakeland after his signing where he was equally impressive in 21 outings going 3-1 with a 2.04 ERA and 4 saves.  Weinhardt’s fastball peaks at 96 MPH and his mid-80’s slider features a sharp late break.  He has shown mental toughness and the ability to bounce back from tough outings.  The Tigers are desperate for quality late inning relievers with the malaise of Todd Jones, Joel Zumaya, and Fernando Rodney.  Weinhardt is an advanced college pitcher who should begin the season in AA with a promotion to Detroit happening at some point in ’09.

 

When I spoke to Razor’s president Brian Gray, he told me that this set would feature 60 prospects that included about 30 draftees and 30 other prospects.  I will keep tabs on all the new signings and product details over the next few months.  Release date is set for some time in December following the issuance of the much anticipated 2008 Bowman Draft and Chrome set. 

Can Razor steal any of its thunder?  We shall see….stay tuned!

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